Printing What Matters
Werner Printing & Engraving executives: Standing (from the left) Ray Frick and Bob Werner. Seated: Debbie Pollard Pawlowski, Louis Werner and Bill Fitzgerald.
Harvey Benjamin (left) and Dave Szczepanik inspect a job produced on an automatic engraving machine at Werner Printing & Engraving.
Work is fed into an engraver by Gladys Rodriguez at Werner Printing & Engraving.
Sal Hernandez and Benjamin check an offset print job in Werner Printing & Engraving’s pressroom.
As the purported war over market share between print and digital media wages on, it is important to distinguish the down-and-dirty print jobs that are gravitating toward electronic versions, and meaningful printing.
Bank statements. Tax codes. Annual reports. Media guides. Telephone directories. Encyclopedias. Certainly the migration of these once ink-on-paper jobs to digital is a loss for printers, but let’s be honest. No one will tie a ribbon around last year’s Donnelley Directory and safely tuck it away in a cedar chest. It’s utilitarian print, often time-sensitive information, necessary but forgettable.
Some printing, on the other hand, is forever. The framed college diploma hanging on your wall. The wedding invitation carefully kept in a photo album or scrap book. The military citation for a life risked, perhaps lost, in service of one’s country. This flavor of printing marks a moment in time, or perhaps succinctly epitomizes a long journey or quest. It is symbolic of what we hold to be valuable and valued.
In truth, it is no more than words and images on paper. Yet, when we run our fingers over the raised type, gold foil stamping and embossing of these documents, no one would dare ask why there are tears in the corners of our eyes.
Just a piece of paper? You bet. It just won’t be found in any recycling bin, nor will digital media ever stand as an acceptable substitute.
This concept is not lost on Chicago-based Werner Printing & Engraving, one of the largest engraving and specialty printers in the Midwest. Werner’s team of highly-specialized employees, buoyed by a crew of master craftsmen and women with an average of 25 years engraving experience, appreciate that their work will be carefully perused, coddled and admired for years to come. Their work is held to a higher standard, an echelon where “close enough” printing is simply unacceptable.